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Movies that hack and slash

2013-07-02 10:05
Violence in Movies
Heads being squished to pulp. People torn to bits by rabid dogs. Buckets of blood gushing from open wounds. Violence in movies has been a debated subject and has arisen again recently when Jim Carrey pulled support from his latest movie Kick-Ass 2, tweeting that he cannot support a movie that condones such strong violence.

And with the surprise success of shocker The Purge, a movie about an alternate America where once a year all crime becomes legal, it is apparent that there is a big audience for gratuitous violence.

Like movie genres, you get different types of violence. You get the gore from the likes of horror movies like Saw and The Hills Have Eyes and the unfiltered action-violence from the Quentin Tarantino movies. Look at our list of the most famous movies of sliced limbs, rotting undead and flying kicks.

28 Days Later
This original take on a zombie apocalypse has violence as the main symptom of the ‘disease’. Infected people go into a continuous episode of rage and destroy everything in their path, showing how violence can lead to the downfall of humanity.

Although the violence is a little bloodier than your average superhero movie, Kick-Ass attracted controversy around one of its characters, namely Hit-Girl. She’s a mean fighting machine not afraid of killing and has the mouth of a sailor – and the actress playing her was eleven years old at the time.

Django Unchained
With three Academy Award nominations and two wins, Quentin Tarantino depicted the horror of slavery through excessive violence. Tarantino has had to defend his movies’ violence countless times, and the added element of race violence opened up a whole different can of worms. Those against Tarantino at least get to see him get blown up.

Sin City
It is hard to believe that this comic book gore noir comes from the same director that made Spy Kids. Even in black and white with splashes of colour, the severed limbs and bullets to the crotch make you wince at every point. Even the environment takes on the bloodlust of the characters.

Evil Dead
Evil Dead takes your nightmares and injects it with horror steroids. The franchise has a big cult status and the 2013 remake has brought new interest to the series. Despite the advancement of CGI, the new movie is done with minimal computer graphics and relies heavily on make-up and stage-blood. Very old school!

Torture scenes have never been my strong point, but Saw deals with psychological as well as physical violence. And not mindless violence either. The Jigsaw Killer chooses victims that appear to be wasting their lives, and then puts them through painful puzzles so that they find their will to live again. This is one of the few horror franchises that became mainstream successful, with about seven feature films.

Hot Fuzz
Comedic violence has been around since Tom&Jerry, and no one does it as well as British Simon Pegg and Nick Frost duo. You wouldn’t expect such violence in a small town, but you can’t help laughing when a shotgun-wielding granny gets a flying kick to the face by Pegg. Violent? Yes. Funny? Most definitely.

Excessive movie violence will never go away, as well as the debate about its impact on society. But perhaps we should view it like a ‘purge’ – a release for the pent-up anger we harbour on a day-to-day basis.

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